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5,000 Poles Protest Atomic Waste Dump

October 05, 1987|United Press International

WARSAW — About 5,000 residents of the western city of Miedzyrzecz on Sunday held the biggest anti-nuclear demonstration ever in Poland, protesting government plans to convert World War II Nazi bunkers into an underground nuclear-waste dump.

The demonstrators--about one-fourth of the population of the town of 20,000 situated 260 miles west of Warsaw--carried posters saying, "We Don't Want a Nuclear Garbage Site" and chanted "We want to live!" during a one-mile, 30-minute march from St. Adalbert Church through the center of town, spokesman Jacek Szymanderski said.

The march was undisturbed by police who only directed participants to the sidewalks, where other residents handed the marchers flowers and shouted, "Thank you!" The demonstrators peacefully dispersed at the end of their march.

The march was led by 20 people who Sunday ended a one-week hunger strike in the church, protesting fines handed out by a misdemeanor court against previous marchers.

It was the fifth and largest march yet organized by the illegal environmental and pacifist Freedom and Peace movement. The group plans demonstrations for the first Sunday of each month to urge the government to drop the waste dump plan.

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